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Gov’t to increase housing support

Mar 09,2017
The government said it will give financial support to 1.1 million households searching for rental homes this year.

According to Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport Wednesday, the government will put 120,000 public housing units on the market for people with no housing in their name to rent. Prices of these units are cheaper than the regular housing prices on the market.

The government also plans to diversify the types of public housing to focus more on need. The Trade Ministry said it will provide more opportunities for young Koreans and newlyweds to receive public housing. Young Koreans are those who are job-seekers, college students and workers with less than five years of experience.

“We will put up more than 50 percent of public housing units that will be out on the market in the first half of the year,” said an official at the Transport Ministry. “We are trying to have as many public housing units be on the market during March and April and August and October, which are when many Koreans move.”

The government also will expand financial benefits to young Koreans for private housing. Currently, newlyweds are able to receive a 0.5 percentage point cut on mortgage loans for jeonse, or long-term rent deposits, but the government will raise it to 0.7 percentage points. The maximum amount on jeonse loans to renters in metropolitan Seoul is 120 million won ($104,350) but the level will be raised to 130 million won. The government regulated the amount as housing prices in the region continue to rise.

To reduce the financial burdens for young Koreans who just began working, the government will also raise the amount of loans they can take every month from 300,000 won to 400,000 won.

The beneficiaries are those who are younger than 35 and those who have less than five years of work experience. Their household income must be less than 40 million won.

The government said it will also expand the number of New Stay housing units in the country. It said it will be able to supply 150,000 housing units this year. Under the New Stay program, the construction company builds apartments for middle-income families at moderate monthly rents. The government came up with the program in 2015 as a solution to high jeonse prices.

As housing prices continue to rise, the government also added that it will monitor speculation in the housing market.


BY KIM YOUNG-NAM [kim.youngnam@joongang.co.kr]